Thirty, flirty and thriving.
I was 14 years old when the movie “13 Going on 30” came out.
And let me tell you something.
It. was. magical.
I wanted to dance to Thriller at a fancy industry party. I wanted to be a member of the Six Chicks (but like, a nice one). And I wanted my incredible boobs to fill out my dresses.
Le sigh. If wishes were horses.
It must also be noted that this movie introduced me to Pat Benatar’s Love is a Battlefield and Billy Joel’s Vienna. I’d say that’s a win-win.
But in the eyes of my 14-year-old self, turning thirty seemed like a lifetime away. I was still two years away from getting my license, seven years from my first legal drink, and eleven years shy of renting a car.
So turning thirty?? I needed to kiss a boy first.
But sure enough, it happened.
Not the boy thing , though I can verify that happened.
Yesterday, I left the decade of my college graduation and wedding day, and turned the page of life.
So I thought it would be fitting to ring in this new decade a little differently.
I’d seen posts like “30 birthday wishes” or “30 things to do before you turn 30.”
And if these last 8 months hadn’t been the blazing dumpster fire that it has turned out to be, I probably would have done one like that.
But more than half of 2020 has gone, we are still in its midst, and there’s still more to come. And it’s been a lot.
Like, go home 2020, you’re drunk.
And as the kids these days say (I feel like I can say that now) I’ve got to stay woke.
So without further adieu, here are my 30 birthday laments.
- The overused and racially charged handling of the word thug. You may as well keep your subtleties and just call them the n-word.
- The suffering of depression. You are not alone. Please talk to someone.
- The inevitable target on my back for calling out racism.
- The economic and racial disparities blatantly revealed by Covid-19.
- Division in the Church.
- Thinking I ordered a birthday chai tea latte and finding out I ordered coffee. #thankunext
- Alabama summers that have all but eliminated my ability to take afternoon walks.
- The Fall and sin of mankind that brought roaches and mosquitos.
- Starting an audiobook only to realize it’s 15-hours (who has the time?!)
- Finishing said 15-hour audiobook (me. I have the time.)
- The justification of injustice.
- Instagram vitriol from Christians.
- The phrase “well if only he had...”
- The loudness of silence.
- The loss of my 20-year old metabolism. RIP.
- No college football (because c’mon SEC, just call it).
- Cavities. And just going to the dentist in general.
- My dog finally realizing she can open the door and escape her doggy gate.
- The apparent extinction of Lysol spray.
- A 17-year old killer being hailed a hero.
- A 17-year old who was killed being blamed for his own death.
- Needing to be sinless in order for your life, and subsequent death, to have had value.
- My view of the Church being forever changed.
- Ahmaud Arbery.
- George Floyd.
- Elijah McClain.
- Jacob Blake.
- Breonna Taylor never being able to write a blog post about turning 30.
Has it all been bad?
No, of course not. I have read great books and had some deep conversations.
I have spent time quality time with the ones that I love.
By the grace of God, I made it to thirty.
But that list of names above? Three out of the five of them weren’t so lucky.
So I will lament. I will mourn. I will have anger, but pray that it doesn’t stay.
And I will hope that when the truth is told, that we can get what we want [justice], as we all [get the chance] to get old.
We have kicked off and we’re nowhere close to being halfway through.
I hope that you realize.
Justice, truth, love, compassion — and of course, Vienna — wait for you.